Figure 1. Cisco Transport Planner Release 9.2.1 GUI
Features and Benefits
• Distance and insertion loss of the network spans
• Type and number of services required in each network location
• Cisco Transport Planner: This Java-based application helps users model and design DWDM networks based on the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP.
• DWDM units: A complete set of DWDM transport and aggregation units helps deliver simple, fast, and intelligent optical capabilities.
• Intelligent optical transmission software: Each network element can automatically support transport functions in the DWDM domain similar to those in the SONET, SDH, and data domains, defining what is now considered next-generation DWDM transport.
• Cisco Transport Controller: You can use this integrated tool to support installation and provisioning at the network level.
Cisco Transport Planner Product Overview and Applications
• GUI-based tool to optimize DWDM layer design: You normally have the availability of different locations in the network besides those where traffic add/drop is required. The Cisco Transport Planner helps you determine the type and quantity of equipment to be used not only for the locations where add/drop is required but also for all the other locations. The tool accounts for the network topology, the fiber types and lengths, and current and future traffic demand.
• Any-to-any, fully flexible network design: Taking advantage of the availability of ROADM units in the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP, the Cisco Transport Planner can help you design a DWDM network with complete flexibility in terms of both source-destination patterns and interfaces and services.
• ROADM optimization: Taking advantage of the availability of multiple ROADM solutions in the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP, Cisco Transport Planner automatically optimizes the number of channels (for example, 32 channels vs. 40 channels) and the configuration (for example, degree-2 vs. multidegree) of the ROADMs in the network. Cisco Transport Planner can also manage the scalability requirements and enable an in-service upgrade to add new directions and new traffic patterns to an existing design.
• The licensing of the Single Module ROADM (SMR) and 80 channel Wavelength Cross Connect (80-WXC) cards has drastically reduced their prices and allows you to adopt a pay-as-you-grow approach, where in "bundles" of 10 wavelengths each are purchased on a need-to-have basis instead of procuring a complete ROADM card initially. Depending on the traffic matrix and the wavelength routing some locations will dictate a complete ROADM card, while at some you could optimize the cost by having a ROADM with fewer wavelengths activated. The Cisco Transport Planner (Release 9.2.1) has in built intelligence to choose the right option for you - either a complete ROADM card or a ROADM card with a bundle of wavelengths licensed.
• The optical networking industry is moving towards Wavelength Switched Optical Networks (WSON), where in an intelligent "control plane" operates over a a fully flexible data plane (or physical layer), to provide you dynamic optical network that is robust to failures and is intelligent in re-optimizing the network as and when possible. The flexibility of the physical layer is accomplished by having "omni-directional" and "colorless" ROADM architectures in the network. The ability to decouple the wavelength from the path is the "omni-directional" feature. Consequently, the omni-directional demand can be launched or received in or from any direction in a certain node. The ability to decouple the wavelength from the service is termed as the "colorless" feature. Consequently, the user can tune to a different wavelength (or color) to overcome possible wavelength routing or assignment constraints. Individually and together these two features provide a enormous flexibility and resilience against failures. The Cisco Transport Planner (Relase 9.2.1) allows you to design networks with both these features.
• Complete set of DWDM interface options: The Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP is the transport DWDM platform for all Cisco units and platforms equipped with a DWDM interface-fixed and tunable. Cisco Transport Planner can support the design of networks where the optical signals are coming from any of the available Cisco devices. You simply select the client service type or force the specific unit to be used for any given service. The flexibility of the platform and the Cisco Transport Planner can help you evaluate the cost of various options.
• Custom-defined DWDM interfaces: The Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP manages direct interconnection of DWDM interfaces to help reduce capital expenditures (CapEx) associated with interfacing different equipment through gray optics. From the network design perspective, Cisco Transport Planner can also accommodate third-party DWDM interfaces by allowing you to input interface-specific parameters and then using this interface in the network design.
• Support for network design changes: One of the most useful services the Cisco Transport Planner gives Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP users is to assist them in the evaluation and definition of changes requested to scale and evolve an existing network (delta planning). Although delta planning clearly helps when fixed OADM units are used for the design, it allows you to add and remove ROADM nodes from a design, add new services to the network, and change the flexibility associated with an existing or a planning design. Delta planning also gives you a complete set of reporting features to help determine what needs to be changed and where, at both the node and network levels.
• Detailed system performances results report: For each of the services defined at the network level, the Cisco Transport Planner provides the relevant optical parameters required to understand whether or not the traffic could be supported. The tool gives you a quick indication of the results based on color-coded icons as well as the opportunity to view comprehensive reports. Reporting on overall latency for service types that may be affected by this parameter is available as well.
• Complete node and network BoM: Overall cost is one of the most critical parameters to control when designing optical networks. Cisco Transport Planner can synchronize the price of each item from the Cisco.com website and, based on this information, can generate a complete BoM for the network and for each node in the design. You can use this information to evaluate different scenarios, using multiple options and constraints for the network design. Cisco Transport Planner also supports custom pricing lists that you can save, export, and exchange with other users.
• Comprehensive support from design to installation: Cisco Transport Planner supports both the design and the commissioning phases of a DWDM network. The tool provides a graphical layout of the racks, shelves, and units of each network location, so this information can be available during the planning or installation of the network. In addition, Cisco Transport Planner provides a complete list of the optical path cords that have to be installed between the different units to allow the proper signal flow at the node and network levels. You can also use Cisco Transport Planner to support situations in the field when the fiber parameters may differ from those considered in the original design. In this case, it is possible to run the tool in "install mode", which validates the design against the new fiber data without changing the overall BoM.
• Automatic data exchange between design and Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP: You can use Cisco Transport Planner to accelerate the installation and commissioning phase of the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP in the field. The tool can generate provisioning files, which you then can use to configure the relevant optical parameters at the node level. In addition, you can use the same file to preprovision the individual cards in the nodes of the network, allowing you to make sure the installation in the field has been properly done, even before the first DWDM wavelength is provisioned across the nodes of the network.
• Automatic node setup: This feature automatically sets and maintains all the optical paths available in a DWDM node. Provided directly by the node controller unit, this automatic control requires neither human intervention nor the use of management interfaces.
• Automatic power control: This feature operates at two different levels in the network so it can react to both catastrophic (fast) events and (slow) degrades. Catastrophic events are managed directly at the optical amplifiers level to help ensure the fastest reaction possible to a sudden change in the number of channels passing through the units. Degrades (such as additional fiber loss or aging) are managed at the network level as an additional automatic system reaction to changes in the network operating conditions. The DWDM nodes exchange power-levels data and can adjust amplifier gain if the measured optical power level differs too much from the expected value. This multilayered control mechanism helps assure that the optical network is always operating optimally, despite changes at the physical layer.
• Wavelength path provisioning: This feature allows the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP to manage DWDM connections the same way the Cisco ONS 15454 Multiservice Provisioning Platform (MSPP) manages SONET, SDH, and data circuits. You can create Optical Channel Network Connections (OCHNCs) as well as Optical Channel Client Connections (OCHCCs) and then manage them as MSPP circuits. One of the primary advantages of wavelength path provisioning is that all ROADMs in the optical path are automatically set and maintained upon circuit creation, without ever requiring manual operation. OCHNCs are normally used to provision optical circuits when DWDM interfaces are not part of the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP. An example of this provisioning is when Layer 2 or Layer 3 line cards are directly interfaced with the Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP. OCHCCs are normally used to provision optical circuits between the near- and the far-end client port of Cisco ONS 15454 MSTP Transponder or Muxponder units. In this case you can manage every client service, even if the service is aggregated with other services and transported across the network as part of a higher-bit-rate optical channel trail (OCH-Trail).